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Pant played fabulous innings, showed great character: Bowling coach Mhambrey

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Cape Town | January 13, 2022 10:50:12 PM IST
Team India bowling coach Paras Mhambrey on Thursday hailed wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant's knock in the second innings of the ongoing Cape Town Test.

Pant scored an unbeaten ton as India was bundled out for 198 in the second innings, setting South Africa a target of 212. For the Proteas, Marco Jansen returned with four wickets while Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi took three each.

"It was a fabulous innings, it got us back into the match. From a personal perspective, there was pressure on him, getting runs at a crucial stage for the team, that's important. He has set the game nicely for us. Really happy with the way he played, he showed a lot of character out there because it is not an easy wicket to bat on," said Mhambrey during a virtual press conference.

"At that stage, you wanted a partnership, Virat was there at the other end, there was a need for a partnership. We batted very well, we wanted to stitch a partnership, once Virat got out, Rishabh had to take the leading role. He batted really sensibly and he gave us an opportunity to win the Test from here," he added.

Dean Elgar (30) and Keegan Petersen (48*) held their ground as South Africa gained full control against India on Day 3. At stumps, South Africa's score read 101/2 -- with the hosts still needing 111 runs to win.

Team India was visibly irked after a controversial Decision Review System (DRS) call which helped South Africa skipper Dean Elgar get his LBW decision overturned in the ongoing fourth innings of the Cape Town Test here at Newlands. The controversial call evoked different reactions from KL Rahul, skipper Virat Kohli, and spinner Ravichandran Ashwin.

"We saw it, you saw it. I will leave it to the match referee to have a look at it. I have nothing more to say, we have seen it all, we want to just move on with the game now," said Mhambrey while replying to an ANI query.

When quizzed further on the issue, Mhambrey said: "Every individual is trying his best, sometimes at the moments like this, people do say some things, it is a game. It would be fair that we move on, let's not take this further."

When asked about Kohli's leadership style, the bowling coach said: "He is quite lively, that is how he likes to play his cricket. His energy rubs off onto the others and that is what you want from your captain."

"It is an experienced group. It is not about what kind of bowling or batting unit you have, after looking at the wicket, decisions are taken accordingly. You have to be prepared to bowl first or defend a small target. It is not about the fifth day, it is about the first day, you take a decision and then you back that decision," he added. (ANI)

 
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